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Pelvic Washing and Cancer Cells

From the GYN Cancer Articles List

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What is pelvic washing?What is pelvic washing?


A pelvic wash, also called peritoneal washing cytology, or PWC, is a procedure in which the pelvic cavity is irrigated ("washed") to check for cancer cells that have migrated beyond the cancer’s point of origin. Fluid is instilled into the abdominal cavity and washed around the abdominal organs, then withdrawn and analyzed for the presence of abnormal cells. A positive result may indicate that the cancer has begun to spread (metastasize).

Some doctors believe the presence of stray cancer cells in the pelvic wash is meaningful, while others do not. If you do not know if a wash was performed during your surgery, look for the word “cytology” on your report or simply ask the doctor or nurse to check the detailed report for you. Most oncologists do perform at least one wash during surgery.

If you do get a positive result for cancer cells in your pelvic wash, do not panic. Most doctors will recommend radiation therapy in such a case, and the radiation will most likely take care of any stray cells remaining in your abdomen.


This content was written by staff of HysterSisters.com by non-medical professionals based on discussions, resources and input from other patients for the purpose of patient-to-patient support.

08-21-2011 - 10:58 PM


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Find a Surgeon

HysterSisters Doctor Directory
Joseph S. Valenti, M.D.
2805 S. Mayhill Road
Denton TX 76208
940 591-6700
Caren C Reaves, M.D.
Caring for Women
2805 S. Mayhill Rd
Denton TX 76208
940-591-6700
Arnold Advincula, M.D.
Columbia Ob/Gyn Midtown
51 West 51st St, 3rd FL
New York NY 10019
(855) 75-OBGYN
Hugo Ribot, M.D.
958-A Joe Frank Harris Parkway
Suite 102
Cartersville GA 30121
770-386-4824
Aileen Caceres, M.D.
Center for Specialized Gynecology/Florida Hospital
410 Celebration Place, Suite 302
Celebration FL 34747
(407) 303-4573
Ellen Wilson, M.D.
5323 Harry Hines Blvd - Dept of OBGYN
Dallas TX 75390
214-648-4747
Jon Nielsen, M.D.
9825 Hospital Dr. Suite 205
Maple Grove MN 55369
763-587-7050
Linda Nicoll, M.D.
NYU Faculty Practice GYN
NYU Trinity Center - 111 Broadway 2nd Floor
New York NY 10006
2122639700
Mayra J. Thompson, M.D.
5323 Harry Hines Blvd Dept OBGYN
Dallas TX 75290
214-645-3888

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